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and the environment. the quality of life issues. host: walk us through the new leadership in china. guest: they cut it down by two. let's talk and more decisions. xi jinping will be the head of the military. host: his background. guest: he is to run large coastal provinces -- he used to run large coastal provinces. he has lineage with mao tse- tung. the person who will be the premier is ranked number two in the party. host: what is his background? guest: he came from a poor province. he has a ph.d. from a famous university in china. he has a solid command of english. he is seen as more of a reformer. host: is there a strong middle- class or is there a disparity between the poor and the wealthy in china? guest: that is the most serious problem for the leadership to address, social inequality. there are 200 million people are considered middle class. they are demanding an expecting different things from the leadership that they may or may not be able to deliver. host: the president is circling china through southeast asia and not going to china. is that a political message to china? guest: china will
are looking at, as you said, an environment in which people are in panic mode over the fiscal cliff. i think there is a lot of support, actually, because the population does not seem to understand what the fiscal cliff is and what it means. what they are hearing on television is a lot of hype about what will happen if the fiscal cliff is not avoided. that is actually generating quite a bit of support for both sides to come together. it seems adult. it seems like the right thing to do. put your partisan differences aside for the country, and find some way to avoid the cliff. what that means in practice is striking some kind of deal, what we have heard of, as a grand bargain. it is important to keep in mind that the grand bargain itself, is really a form of austerity. this is an austerity plan. when you have an economy that is still struggling to find its feet, and you are talking about imposing austerity, i think we have seen pretty clearly, watching europe over the last 3.5 years -- that is not a good idea. we definitely have time to start -- to stop and get this right, before we follow gree
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